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The Inside Scoop @ BCA

The Inside Scoop @ BCA

Brett | Appraiser

Variety is the Spice of Life

Have you ever wanted to work for a government organization, but you weren't sure there would be enough variety in your job? BC Assessment is a great fit for exactly that! I started working here as an Appraiser just over four years ago, with the Strata Team. After valuing condos and townhouses in my first year, I quickly moved onto valuing single family houses and agricultural land. Two years after that, I was given an opportunity to value commercial properties including office buildings, restaurants and banks.

I have really enjoyed the unique challenges that each property type elicits. Whether you are fielding property owner inquiries in January, attending appeal hearings in March, or analyzing sales data in October (to set the assessment roll), each month presents a new set of tasks and challenges. Throughout the year you will have the opportunity to inspect new construction projects, utilize geographical information system (GIS) mapping, use Microsoft Excel and other tools to analyze sales statistics, speak to real estate professionals about industry trends, or meet with city planners about upcoming development plans.

I have been very impressed with the numerous engaging opportunities for employees that extend beyond our core job functions. These include groups such as the Social Committee, the Engagement Committee and the Green Team. BC Assessment is a progressive organization, where new ideas are not only welcomed; they are supported with the necessary resources. Recently, I came up with an idea to give appraisers a chance to spend a "day in the life" of an employee from a different team. The ultimate goal was to provide appraisers exposure to the valuation techniques of different property types. The management team in my office supported me with the go-ahead to implement a local job shadow program to make this happen! This experience helped provide employees with insight into the property types they may be interested in valuing at some point in the future.

BC Assessment has allowed me to pursue new challenges by getting involved beyond my core responsibilities. I am proud to work for an organization that has provided me with such a rewarding career path, and look forward to growing my career here over the years to come!

Amrinder | Property Information Collector

Active Development

It’s official, I have finally graduated! I have now completed my Bachelors of Science (B.Sc) degree and could not be happier! I was skeptical at times that I would not be able to balance such a demanding school schedule while continuing to work. However, the flexibility that BC Assessment offered as an employer allowed me to complete my degree while maintaining a full-time position.

The completion of my degree came with a great reward: I was almost immediately offered a temporary assignment as an Appraiser, which allows me to act in a higher position. As an acting Appraiser, I will be able to further develop my skill set and excel within the organization. This new and engaging opportunity has proven to me that hard work and dedication really pays off. 

The transition from my previous position has come with some new and exciting tasks. I find myself dealing with our customers on a more complex level, which really has allowed me a deeper understanding of the job. The training provided by my supervisor has really shaped my development.  Working on complex tasks and receiving constructive feedback from my supervisor has allowed me to grow in this new role quite smoothly.

The best part of my journey is that I can now see development in myself. As I actively pursued my degree and worked full-time as a Property Information Collector, I learned how to manage my time and schedule my daily routines. Today, I find myself using these skills at work and at home on a regular basis.  I can finally say that the procrastinator that I once was is no longer! Instead, I feel relaxed and well prepared for the day ahead.

Working in a professional and engaging environment gave me the right tools to excel both at university and in the work place. Moreover, by completing my degree, I have fulfilled one of my desired goals and now it’s on to bigger and better things at BC Assessment! I look forward to continuing to take on new challenges in my current assignment as an Appraiser.

Jennifer | Property Information Administrator

Where Does The Time Go?

I can hardly believe my probationary period has come to an end. It has been a whirlwind six months, and I couldn't be happier. My fellow coworkers have accepted, encouraged and supported me every step of the way, enabling me to progress at a pace comfortable for me.

There are so many facets for learning opportunities and intricacies to the Property Assessment Administrator role, that I am continuously learning something new. Tasks vary from being the first point of contact for clients over the phone, via email or in person, to basic data entry.

Communication with clients are regularly intriguing, simply because of the incredible variety of items the inquiries could include. Data entry tasks can vary from entering building permits received from municipalities, conducting quality checks on our own data, or updating ownership information - and that's just what I have been exposed to thus far! There is still so much more I have to learn. My personality is one that thrives on keeping busy and being challenged regularly, and it certainly has been easy for BC Assessment to accommodate it.

One of the most eye opening experiences was discovering that as a Property Information Administrator, the level of our involvement is critical to the development and maintenance of an annual assessment roll. The assessment roll plays an integral part for both municipalities and property owners, and it is fulfilling to know that what we do as part of the Administrative Services Team makes a difference for the communities we live in.

With no end in sight for learning prospects, and an array of potential opportunities that lay ahead within BC Assessment, I am certain to have my hands full for many years to come. The past several months have been an adventure, and I am eager to see how I continue to charter my future within BC Assessment.

Time flies. It's up to you to be the navigator. - Robert Orben

Jason | Property Information Collector

Office Activities

Over the past year at BC Assessment, I have constantly been learning about the many enjoyable and engaging team-wide activities that take place throughout the year. One in particular that I have chosen to be involved with is the 100 Day Challenge, where my colleague Tanya and I are co-team leaders.

The Challenge began this year on May 30th, 2016 and will run for 100 days until September. The idea behind it  is to encourage a healthy lifestyle during the beautiful months of  summer, and to see which region is capable of pulling off the highest amount of physical activity. These activities could include cycling, walking, swimming, hiking, paddling and of course running! Each activity is converted differently in to a set amount of kilometers which tally up to a larger, regional total.

Many of us within BC Assessment, with offices located  around the province, are taking part this year -each with their sights set on victory!

I feel that it is important to engage in these types of fun activities around the office, so that each of us can become more involved with our local team, and this allows us to have some friendly competition with others It's a fun change of pace from the daily tasks we  complete throughout the typical work day... When I had first heard about the challenge last year I was a little hesitant to take part because I was still new to the company, but as it progressed it increasingly piqued my interest and I learned it was a great way to spark conversation with others. Now, in the following year, I am one of the team leaders!

We are only a few weeks in to the 100 Day Challenge but I am looking forward to seeing what the outcome will be and which office will win that coveted trophy!

Rebeka | Manager, Property Data Accuracy Program

Climbing New Paths

As I take some time to reflect on my career with BC Assessment, I can't help but feel grateful to have found my way to an organization that is so focused on the internal development of its employees. I joined the company as a university graduate eight years ago, and after a variety of interesting and challenging opportunities, was recently successful in applying for a management role.

Starting as an appraiser, I followed what I would consider to be a non-linear career path to my current role. BC Assessment allows staff an opportunity to follow more of a career rock wall than the traditional ladder. Instead of pigeon-holing people in their current position, employees are encouraged to take on temporary assignments in different areas and are offered training and guidance to grow into the role. I personally benefited from this philosophy, completing temporary terms and project work in a number of different areas. On top of keeping things interesting, this variety of work has given me a much broader perspective of the organization and I believe it enabled me to more quickly develop my skills. If you'd asked me when I started with the company, I never would have guessed that I would end up where I am now, but looking back I can see what each of the different roles I've held has contributed to my current position.

I consider myself lucky to be supported by senior leadership in developing within my current role – both through informal mentorship and the provision of formal educational opportunities – and to have my first management position involve leading a team of such incredibly motivated and talented individuals.

I don't know what my future has in store, but with BC Assessment I know that it will definitely be interesting!

Jason | Property Information Collector

DIY Schedule

As I approach my one year anniversary with BC Assessment, I have to say that I really enjoy both the work that I do and my work environment. I am a Property Information Collector, currently working on the Desktop Review project with team members from around the province, who I have come to know through virtual meetings. One of the main reasons BC Assessment is such a great place to work is the flexible hours of work that allow me to pursue my post secondary education while continuing to earn a living. Managing full time school and a job is no easy task, but being able to select your own scheduled hours each month makes a big difference. I have shared my experience with friends and family, and in doing so have been able to interest many others in joining the BC Assessment team.

My first months at BC Assessment were in the summer between two university semesters.  It was during this time that I was encouraged to join the team on a long term basis.  I learned more about the organization’s flexibility and how the work I would be doing would still allow me to attend classes throughout the week.

Time management is key to having a successful and healthy balance between work and school. Since starting at BC Assessment, I have almost completed an entire year of university, which feels like quite an accomplishment!  I look forward to continuing my work at BC Assessment while completing my undergraduate degree.  I would encourage anyone who is interested in attending school and working at the same time to make an effort to do so, because it’s an amazing feeling to know that you can do both, and that BC Assessment will help you achieve this goal!

Jonathon | Senior Appraiser

Working My Way Up

Back in 2003, I was struggling due to an economic downturn.   I was looking for any job, not a career, and I applied to everything I could find, not thinking that I would find something worthwhile.  I didn't put as much effort as I could have into the application I submitted to BC Assessment.   I thought my drafting and construction skills might be relevant to the position but I did not have high expectations.  To my surprise, I was called for an interview and was soon after offered the job. 

I began as a temporary Property Information Collector (PIC), which piqued my interest in appraisal.  From my first day at BC Assessment, I received excellent training.  I was impressed by the opportunities available, and  I decided to continue in the field, and  become an Appraiser.   Continually being exposed to progressively more complex tasks allowed me to advance to the position of Senior Appraiser.  A great set of leadership courses was provided to help me succeed in my new role.  I thought I had finished taking on new challenges, but I've had the opportunity to work as an Acting Deputy Assessor, so my career development continues!  Over the twelve years I've worked at BC Assessment, the organization has provided me with great opportunities for internal growth. 

One thing that I find rewarding about being given an acting opportunity is that when I take on a temporary assignment, it also means that there is a cascading effect for other staff.  An Appraiser gets to develop their skills at being a Senior Appraiser, and a PIC gets the chance to be an Appraiser.  Acting in a more senior role encourages staff to push themselves to new levels and gives individuals the opportunity to try a position before deciding if the job is a good fit.

Jennifer | Property Information Administrator

Welcome Home 

Few people can journey through life knowing exactly what they want to do, and few stay in the same profession. BC Assessment offers employees the chance to enjoy a long and diverse career, with many personal development opportunities.

I have been working for BC Assessment for almost six weeks now, as a Property Information Administrator in the Fraser Valley Region. It is a demanding position that requires a lot of knowledge and a high level of customer service. It can be daunting for a new employee to come into the workplace in a new role at one of the busiest times of the year, and even more so while in the midst of adjusting to life in a new province.

Day one was full of nervous smiles and awkward first introductions. From learning how to assist customers with inquiries, updating records such as ownership information or addresses, and processing recent sales transactions, it has been a steep slope up. I admit I have only begun to scratch the surface.

Thankfully, it became quickly apparent to me the BC Assessment has a phenomenal ‘work family’ that is supportive, encouraging, and fosters personal development. From the vast expanse of experience within the office to the welcoming atmosphere during preliminary introductions, I am proud to be part of this organization. So many of the employees here have been around for years, and will retire after a long career with the organization. This loyalty to BC Assessment is high praise of the organization. This also provides a solid base for mentoring new employees joining BCA during this time of change, and allows for a fresh look at existing efficiencies and procedures.

If you are adaptable and enjoy striving for excellence, then this is the place for you - you can find endless opportunities for personal growth and development. I am looking forward to what my future holds with BC Assessment and have only just begun to imagine the possibilities.

Amrinder | Property Information Collector

Not So Distant Future

I have been a Property Information Collector for nearly two years now.  While working full-time at BC Assessment, I been have been actively pursuing my degree at Simon Fraser University in Environmental Sciences.  The flexibility that BC Assessment offers has allowed me to easily work towards my degree while maintaining a full-time position.  When I first started working with the organization I was afraid that balancing a full-time job and working towards my degree would be a stressful process.  However, I quickly learned that working in a professional and engaging environment gave me the right tools to excel both at university and in the work place. 

One of the hardest parts about being a working student is learning how to manage time.  I found that working on small projects with set deadlines at work allowed me to develop my time management skills.  I learned how to prioritize my daily routines and started planning my schedule weeks in advance.  I was self motivated because I knew that once I completed my degree, I could apply for new and exciting opportunities within BC Assessment.

The best part of this whole process was the fact that I was not alone.  I found that many of my peers were also working and pursuing their degrees.  I was able to receive a lot of feedback from these individuals on how to manage my schedule to make my life easier.  The best tip that I received was to not leave anything to the last minute.  I was a major procrastinator before I started working here.  I now often find myself ahead of schedule, because I complete homework assignments well before deadlines in order to  arrive at work relaxed and ready for the day ahead.

I can finally say that I see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I am in my final semester and I will be graduating in the spring of 2016 – a goal I could not have accomplished without the support and flexibility of BC Assessment!

Pardeep | Talent Assistant

More Than One Avenue 

Few of us know the route we will follow upon completing our desired level of education, but imagine discovering the right path for you and being provided the chance to give it a shot!

You may know of a friend or acquaintance that works for BC Assessment and be familiar with career opportunities in appraisal, but have you heard of the many other career paths available within the organization?  As a current Appraiser, I perform various tasks relating to property valuation while maintaining communication with property owners across the region.  Recently, I was presented with a unique opportunity to work with our Human Resources team.  I jumped at the chance as this was a good fit for me and directly linked to my post-secondary education.  My superiors fully supported and encouraged me to take on this role to expand my horizons outside the world of appraisal.  Working out of our Head Office was a new experience on it's own!  I was able to put faces to familiar names I had come to know over the years and see how our many departments all integrate together to function as a larger team.  This temporary assignment exposed me to tasks relating to recruitment, compensation and employee relations.  From speaking with property owners to now guiding applicants, I used the knowledge I had attained working in a field office to acquire new skills and give this position a try! 

Not only was this a valuable opportunity for personal growth, but it was rewarding to see that BC Assessment supports employee development from within.